Monday, February 6, 2017

Giving Local People a Voice

Starting last week OPM Group delivered the first of six events on behalf of the team in South West London developing the area’s Sustainability and Transformation Plan (STP). Along with 43 other partnerships across the country, the area is developing a five-year plan to ensure quality of care is maintained in the context of changing demographics and challenging finances.

Some are sceptical about the value of engaging people who use services in this challenging process. Others are choosing to take the route of commissioning communications agencies to support their proposals, seeing it as necessary to ‘sell’ their ideas to people locally.

It is refreshing to work with the NHS in South West London, who are genuinely open to hearing what people have to say, and are committed to listening. While their plans are by no means without controversy – their STP proposes exploring the potential for consolidating acute care from 5 sites to 4 or 3 – they are also not set in stone. The debate reflected this position, with people raising concerns and the team responding constructively. It felt like people were committing to working together to find ways to solve the healthcare challenges in South West London.

People attending these open invite events came from a range of backgrounds – including interested members of the public, local NHS workers, representatives of local campaigning groups and local councillors. It was interesting to see how this diverse audience were very aware of the challenges facing the NHS, and agreed that there was a case for change. Of course, views diverge on what the answers should be, but that is where the discussion gets interesting.

These events are just one step on the journey. As the proposals become firmer (and if in the future they put forward major changes to health services) the NHS in SW London will run a full public consultation on their plans. But, importantly, their plans will already be informed by, and respond to, local people’s concerns. That doesn’t guarantee everyone will be happy with the plans, but it does give SW London an idea of how it can mitigate against the causes of concern.

Anyone living in SW London is welcome to sign up to attend one of the five remaining events. Details are available here.

Friday, January 27, 2017

Evaluation report – Learning into practice project

OPM was commissioned to produce an evaluation report on the Learning into Practice Project (LiPP) which was funded under DfE’s Innovation Programme and ran by NSPCC and SCIE.

The LiPP was testing a proof of concept – aiming to establish what is needed on an ongoing and sustainable basis to improve the quality and use of Serious Case Reviews (SCR)  in England. The LiPP consisted of four main workstreams:

Our evaluation was asked to explore:

The evaluation involved 63 qualitative interviews with those involved in LiPP activities; and an online survey aimed at non-participants in the LiPP activities to explore wider views on the proposals. 126 people completed this. Alongside the external evaluation, the project team conducted an internal evaluation of the LiPP, focussing on describing the mechanisms being tested, and the emerging learning from these.

Please find this report and other evaluation reports under the same Innovation Programme on DfE’s website.

Friday, November 18, 2016

New Appointment

From: Peter Holland OPM Group

In conjunction with the announcement of Ms Khan’s departure OPM Group would also like to announce the appointment of Terry Parker as Interim Finance and Corporate Services Director.
 
Mr Parker has been a Finance and Corporate Services director in a range of public, private and third sector organisations. He’s had a lot of experience as an Interim FD for businesses of our size, with substantial experience of managing finance and the full range of corporate services, including HR, ICT, facilities and legal. He’s also got a lot of experience at business modelling.  He has specific experience of working with research and consultancy businesses like us including Stepping Out and the Behavioural Insight Team.

Friday, November 18, 2016

Announcement

From Peter Holland, CEO OPM Group.

With regret, I would like to announce that Jameela Khan, OPM Group Finance and Corporate Services Director, will be leaving OPM Group on 20th November.
 
Jameela went part time in April to begin to develop her own business providing financial and management consultancy support to charities and third sector organisations. She is now leaving so that she can concentrate full time on building her business.
 
On behalf of the Board and personally, I would like to thank Jameela for the enormous contribution she has made to OPM Group over the past two years. She played a key role in securing long-term investment and in setting us on a path for growth.
 
During her time with us Jameela identified and led a rigorous cost improvement plan for OPM Group resulting in significant savings. This involved designing and implementing a major change management programme across the group.
 
OPM Board of directors and I have greatly benefited from her advice throughout her stay with us. We could not have achieved the transformation of the business without her technical support, dedication and loyalty to the OPM group.
 
Jameela’s support to me and to our Board was invaluable during her time with us.  During this period, I could not have asked for a better finance director and a company secretary for OPM. I am sure you will join me is wishing her all the very best for the future and hope our paths cross again in the future

Peter Holland
CEO OPM Group

From Lucy Farrow, Chair of the Board of Trustees, OPM Group

I would like to echo Peter’s thanks to Jameela for all her hard work over the last two years in getting OPM Group on to a sound financial footing. I know that I, and other colleagues, have benefitted hugely from Jameela’s experience, wisdom and patience. Her work has made a real difference to the relationship between trustees, board and members, helping us to communicate and hold each other to account more effectively. As company secretary she has always given us sound advice and her work on our governance systems has done much to strengthen the organisation for the future.
 
I have personally learnt a lot from Jameela, and want to wish her every success in her new adventure.
 
Lucy Farrow
Chair of the Board of Trustees
OPM Group
 

Monday, October 17, 2016

Helping service providers access social investment

We know from our extensive engagement with service providers that a growing number are interested in exploring Social Impact Bonds or other forms of social investment to help them secure longer term contracts or to scale up their services. The £80m Life Chances Fund offers new opportunities for service providers to engage in outcomes-based contracting through a Social Impact Bond model. However, many do not know where to start and may be know how to decide whether a Social Impact Bond is appropriate.

In line with our values as a public interest company, we have produced this simple and free-to-download Service Provider Toolkit aimed at helping service providers think through whether a Social Impact Bond may be right for them. It also includes 10 Top Tips and signposting to other resources.

We would like to thank Michelle Farrell-Bell, Regional Director (North-West) for Teens and Toddlers, for her insights and feedback on an initial version of this toolkit.

Monday, October 17, 2016

Social investment toolkit for service providers

We know from our extensive engagement with service providers that a growing number are interested in exploring Social Impact Bonds or other forms of social investment to help them secure longer term contracts or to scale up their services. The £80m Life Chances Fund offers new opportunities for service providers to engage in outcomes-based contracting through a Social Impact Bond model. However, many do not know where to start and may be know how to decide whether a Social Impact Bond is appropriate.

In line with our values as a public interest company, we have produced this simple and free-to-download Service Provider Toolkit aimed at helping service providers think through whether a Social Impact Bond may be right for them. It also includes 10 Top Tips and signposting to other resources.

We would like to thank Michelle Farrell-Bell, Regional Director (North-West) for Teens and Toddlers, for her insights and feedback on an initial version of this toolkit.

Monday, October 3, 2016

Capital for Colleagues invest in OPM Group’s long term success

We are delighted to announce that Capital for Colleagues have invested in us to support our growth as an employee-owned business. This investment signifies our long-term commitment to delivering a range of research and consultancy services which deliver social impact and help people have a say in the decisions that affect them.

Peter Holland, CEO of OPM Group said, ‘I am excited to announce our partnership with Capital for Colleagues. Their investment will help us grow while we continue to support the delivery of social impact and help people have a voice. I am delighted that we have found a partner who understands and has a deep commitment to employee ownership. We look forward to a long-term mutually supportive relationship.’

If you have any questions about the partnership, please contact Linda Jackson.

Monday, September 19, 2016

Our evaluation finds end of life coordination centre a success

Our evaluation looking at the impact of a new End of Life Care Coordination Centre based at Royal Trinity Hospice has found that patients using this centre are less likely to be admitted to hospital or to die in hospital at the end of their lives.

The Wandsworth Care Coordination Centre was designed to address confusion among patients and their families about who to contact for help and support, due to the range of organisations involved in caring for someone approaching the end of their life.

It comprises a 7 day nurse-led coordination team and helpline for patients, families and professionals based at Trinity; a dedicated St George’s End of Life Community Nurse; and a team of Marie Curie Health and Personal Care Assistants who can offer specialised hands-on care at home for people with any terminal illness. It was commissioned by Wandsworth CCG as a two year pilot in February 2015.

We found the centre resulted in avoided admissions and faster discharge from hospital, which could reduce deaths in hospital. The centre was also found to free up clinical time for local healthcare professionals. The evaluation calculated these benefits could amount to potential savings of almost £350,000 to the NHS in the first year of the pilot, although these have to be offset against the cost of delivering the model.

The evaluation also found the centre improved the quality of end of life care through patients and families feeling supported at home and feeling reassured that they will be looked after. The quality of care arranged and provided by the centre was also deemed to be improved.

Dallas Pounds, Chief Executive Officer at Trinity, said, “Most people want to be cared for at home at the end of their lives rather than spending their final days in hospital. We now have evidence to show that the Wandsworth End of Life Care Coordination Centre is helping this become a reality for more people.

We hope other hospices and healthcare providers are able to draw from this evaluation so more people can achieve their final wishes at the end of life.”

The final evaluation report can be found here.

Monday, September 5, 2016

Want to know more about participation in transport planning?

As one of our experts in planning consultation and engagement, Lucy Farrow is co-delivering a course on Participation in Transport Planning, hosted by the Chartered Institute of Logistics and Transport on the 11 and 12 October 2016. Focussing on the principles and practice of participation, this two-day course is aimed at transport planners, managers or those that work in a profession that contributes to the transport planning process e.g. a highway engineer, development planner or land use planner. For more information either complete the application form or contact lfarrow@opm.co.uk.

Tuesday, August 9, 2016

Our work with children and young people is informing best practice

We are delighted that our evaluation of the vInspired 24/24 programme has been included in the systematic review of the Early Intervention Foundation (EIF) Social and Emotional Learning Programme Assessment, contributing to the evidence base of best practice in this area.

The EIF has been funded by the Joseph Rowntree Foundation to undertake a programme of work to understand what works in developing the relational, social and emotional capabilities and assets of children and families either in or at risk of poverty.  This work builds upon and extends an existing review carried out by EIF in 2015: ‘Social and Emotional Learning: Skills for life and work’

The 24/24 programme, managed by vInspired and funded by the Department of Education (DfE) and the Jack Petchey Foundation, was a structured volunteering and social action intervention programme, designed to help young people facing challenging circumstances to improve their life choices. The evaluation was designed to measure the progress of individuals during the programme and evidence the impact of the programme on young peoples’ outcomes and against key performance indicators. It also identified the critical success factors and limitations of the delivery model and made recommendations for future delivery.

The evaluation report can be accessed here.